VIDEO: Debate over proposed daycare brewing in Pleasant Hill

 

PLEASANT HILL (KRON) — The debate over a proposed daycare is brewing in Pleasant Hill.

Parents say they are looking forward to another option after sitting on waitlists for years. But their neighbors argue traffic congestion is bad enough as it is.

The planning commission is listening to both sides before making a decision on the proposed daycare that neighbors opposed to the plan call a safety concern.

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Applicant Sharon Yang arrived armed with an attorney and architect to face the planning commission as they decided whether to allow her proposed daycare in Pleasant Hill.

The idea to use two units of the First Church-Christ Scientist, on the corner of Boyd Road and Kahrs Avenue, has angered neighbors that don’t want any more cars on their streets than there already are.

“We truly support taking care of the kids,” said Steve Giacomino, who opposes the daycare location. “However, we don’t feel this is the right place for the daycare. We’d love to see the daycare come into our city, anywhere where it’s safe. And this daycare will impact the traffic so bad that it affects the safety of our children and our households.”

There are two schools within a quarter of a mile of the intersection that already causes congestion in the residential area that opponents argue was never intended to be treated as commercial. But by allowing a daycare that would take in 72 kids, they say the morning commute would be longer and having more cars on streets is a risk.

But parents in the neighborhood say they’re desperate for an added daycare and can’t understand how anyone would deny them the benefit to their families.

“We have been looking for a daycare center for our child for two and a half years,” said Pla Mayer, who supports the daycare location. “And anytime we call child centers, we are always placed on a waitlist or they say it’s not available and to call back in a couple of months. My daughter is No. 47 on a waitlist. She will never get in and that is unacceptable. We need another daycare.”

Her husband says they’re forced to pay big money for private care.

Opponents who outnumbered the parents wore green armbands identifying their group as the “Anti-Daycare Crusade.

A study presented showed there would be no significant impact on noise or traffic if the daycare is added to the intersection, which was said could handle triple the cars that pass through today.

One thing both parties could agree on was that adding a right turn lane by the proposed school, which the applicant plans, on would alleviate traffic.

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